Improving the availability and use of health research information in LMICs (11)

15 February, 2020

Dear HIFA colleagues,

Thank you for your ongoing contributions as we explore 5 questions for the HIFA Roundtable at the Geneva Health Forum, 24 March.

http://www.hifa.org/news/hifa-invites-everyone-contribute-geneva-health-...

I have collated our contributions in relation to Question 1, and reproduce a few of these below for further discussion.

Q1. WHO NEEDS ACCESS TO HEALTH RESEARCH INFORMATION AND WHY? WHAT IS OUR VISION FOR ACCESS TO HEALTH RESEARCH INFORMATION IN LMICS IN 2030?

1. WHO Director-General Dr Tedros: "People must have access to accurate information to protect themselves and others" [this in relation to the coronavirus outbreak, but we would argue it is applicable in all areas of health]

2. 'Increasing the availability of quality health research information is fundamental to the successful attainment of global health and progressive realization of the right to health. Manila Declaration (informed by discussions on HIFA). https://philippinejournalofpathology.org/index.php/PJP/article/view/65

3. Access to health research information is a sine qua non to inform health policy and practice at global, national, local and individual levels. A robust research base that is accessible is needed directly or indirectly by *everyone*.

4. ‘The outbreak of the 2019 novel coronavirus has prompted researchers, journals and funders to ensure that all medical findings are shared rapidly and are accessible to everyone in a bid to prevent further spread of the disease and to improve patient care This includes making all peer-reviewed research immediately open access and sharing relevant findings on preprint servers or platforms. But should we be waiting for the next outbreak to make these changes or should we start adopting open access policies now to combat current and future health risks? ’https://openpharma.blog/2020/02/11/combatting-the-next-outbreak-why-open...

5. "Does anyone doubt that we are in the midst of a rapid transition towards a future where most research will be published open access?"

This leads us onto Question 2 of our discussion:

Q2. WHAT STEPS ARE NEEDED TO PROMOTE OPEN ACCESS (FOR PUBLISHERS, RESEARCHERS AND USERS IN LMICS)?

Some issues that we have looked at include:

- Author Processing Charges

- Misconceptions

- Building awareness and education - how to demonstrate the benefits of OA, quality of OA, and its added value

- Predatory journals

- Ethical arguments for OA

Best wishes, Neil

Coordinator, HIFA Project on Access to Health Research - Supported by The Lancet and Elsevier

http://www.hifa.org/working-groups/access-health-research

Let's build a future where people are no longer dying for lack of healthcare information - Join HIFA: www.hifa.org

HIFA profile: Neil Pakenham-Walsh is coordinator of the HIFA global health campaign (Healthcare Information For All - www.hifa.org ), a global community with more than 19,000 members in 177 countries, interacting on six global forums in four languages. Twitter: @hifa_org FB: facebook.com/HIFAdotORG neil@hifa.org